The eighth annual Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week will take place from June 3-11, 2023. While this week has been officially designated in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia, events will take place throughout the entire watershed to raise awareness about this valuable economic and environmental resource—a national treasure that directly connects over 18 million residents.
The 2023 theme, “Chesapeake Journeys” represents the many types of transformative journeys that take place in the watershed. From the development of restoration projects to the many-traveled waterways and trails, the Chesapeake is a place of growth. Each of the nine days will focus on a different kind of journey including wildlife migrations, the movement of water from the headwaters to the Bay, the traversing of trails that cross the watershed, the drive to preserve cultural sites, the path to becoming a steward and many more.
Events spanning the watershed from Virginia to New York can be found on the Bay Program’s Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week calendar. The week will kick off on June 3 with the annual Clean the Bay Day in Virginia and conclude on June 11 with the Patuxent River Wade-In, where the Fowler family will celebrate the legacy of the late Maryland State Senator Bernie Fowler. Check out some of the other exciting events taking place around the watershed!
- Celebrate the Chesapeake Bay Program’s 40th Anniversary with tours of restoration projects in Baltimore, Maryland on June 7 and Lancaster, Pennsylvania on June 9.
- Explore the needs of sensitive stream organisms in Pequea, Pennsylvania while delving into humans’ ancient relationship with water on June 8.
- Join a guided kayak tour on June 10 of Paradise Creek—the largest restored wetland in Virginia that is open for public recreation.
- Take a photography safari hike at Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary in Lothian, Maryland on June 10.
Participating groups and individuals can promote their interests and offerings as well as how they rely on clean water over social media. To make it easier for these audiences to join in on the fun, the Chesapeake Bay Program has developed a social media tool kit that includes graphics, photos and sample social media posts for each of the nine days.
To stay up to date with the latest events, resources and ways to get involved during the week, visit the Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week website. Connect with us on social media using the hashtags #ChesapeakeJourneys and #BayAwarenessWeek to share your experiences and join the conversation.
“As we approach Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week, it is important to reflect on the place the Bay plays in our everyday lives. Historic investments have been made from across the watershed to ensure that the Chesapeake Bay remains a treasured natural resource where millions live, work and play. As the calendar turns to summer, what a great time to get out and celebrate all the progress being made to protect and restore the Bay. And while you are out, think about how you can lend a hand in sustaining the Bay for future generations.”
- Dave Campbell, Acting Director, Chesapeake Bay Program, Environmental Protection Agency
“Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week is a great occasion to celebrate how clean water benefits all people. The Chesapeake Bay contributes so much to Maryland’s culture, quality of life and strong economy. And because so many restoration actions occur upstream of the Bay itself, the health and economic well-being benefits extend to communities throughout Maryland and other Bay states.”
- Serena McIlwain, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment
“National Park Service Chesapeake is eager to celebrate Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week and recognize the many accomplishments, success stories and journeys ahead that are unique to the Chesapeake Bay watershed. We welcome everyone across the watershed to visit a nearby Chesapeake Gateway this week, learn about local history, discover diverse stories and people of the region, and explore and enjoy watershed experiences that make the Chesapeake a national treasure.”
- Wendy O’Sullivan, Superintendent, National Park Service Chesapeake Bay Office
“The waters and abundant resources of the Chesapeake Bay, along with the Potomac and Anacostia rivers, have been drivers of human settlements, while shaping our nation’s capital and the places we call home. These waters have experienced pristine conditions and periods of tarnish; and just like us, they too have journeys. What will be your journey this week? Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week is a good time to break free from your routines and discover something new about Bay culture, history and wildlife, get outside or become involved in caring for your local streams. I hope you take this week to celebrate the world outside and experience the connections created by our local waterways.”
- Maria Mackie, Chair, Chesapeake Bay and Water Resources Policy Committee, Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments
"The 19 million residents of the Chesapeake Bay watershed represent an incredibly diverse cross-section of our population. As we journey around the watershed, in our daily commutes to work and the grocery store, or recreate in beautiful places, we all have an opportunity to positively impact the rivers and streams of the Chesapeake. Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week is an opportunity for everyone to learn more, engage more and become a contributor to a healthy and clean watershed."
- Kate Fritz, CEO, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay
“The Chesapeake Bay region exists in a constant state of change, whether it’s wildlife migrations, land conservation, human development or more. As we work together to improve the health of the Chesapeake Bay and save special places watershed-wide, we acknowledge the decades of work of the Chesapeake Bay movement, and the centuries of history and heritage bound within our watershed. The Chesapeake Conservancy is enthusiastic to celebrate Chesapeake Bay Awareness Week and reflect on the many milestones of the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed.”
- Joel Dunn, President and CEO, Chesapeake Conservancy